Awards and Grants Highlight UCLA's Presence at American Academy of Periodontology Annual Meeting

group of people at a conferece
Members of the UCLA School of Dentistry Periodontics community celebrate Dr. Beatriz Bezerra's Bud and Linda Tarrson Fellowship award.
November 14, 2023

Honors presented to two faculty members and case competition awards for a pair of residents punctuated the UCLA School of Dentistry’s presence at the American Academy of Periodontology’s 2023 Annual Meeting, Nov. 9 to 12 in Austin, Texas.

Dr. Beatriz Bezerra, health sciences clinical assistant professor and director of the Section of Periodontics’ pre-doctoral program, earned the Bud and Linda Tarrson Fellowship from the American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) Foundation. The fellowship – which includes a $30,000 grant over three years for early-career periodontists to further their teaching and research endeavors – was previously awarded by School of Dentistry faculty members Dr. Paulo Camargo (2002) and Dr. Flavia Pirih (2013).

Bezerra was presented the award by Joan Otomo-Corgel, D.D.S. ’76, M.P.H. ’80, herself an honoree in Austin. Dr. Otomo-Corgel, chair of the School of Dentistry’s Board of Counselors and a lecturer in the Section of Periodontics, received the AAP’s Distinguished Service Award. Presented for dedicated organizational membership for more than 20 years, Dr. Otomo-Corgel is a most-deserving recipient; she just concluded a one-year term as AAP Foundation president and served as the 2015 AAP President, among many other roles.

The future of UCLA Periodontics also appears bright as Drs. Brittany Wall and Masooma Rizvi earned third and fourth place respectively, in the 2023 Periodontal Residents BioXclude Case Competition presented by Snoasis Medical. Dr. Wall received $1,500 for her case study while Dr. Rizvi was awarded $1,000.

“The UCLA School of Dentistry’s commitment to developing periodontal leaders was on full display last weekend in Austin,” said Dr. Pirih, who serves as section chair. “We are beholden not only to our students and patients but to advancing the field as a whole. The awards earned by Drs. Bezerra, Otomo-Corgel, Wall, and Rizvi embody this thought leadership.”

On Saturday, Nov. 11, the Section of Periodontics hosted an alumni reception at the Austin Taco Project. Over light bites and beverages, Bruins gathered to network, deepen friendships, and celebrate each other’s accomplishments.

One Bruin alum, Ryan Wong, D.D.S. ’20, had a busy weekend in the Lone Star State. Dr. Wong, who also serves as a lecturer in the section, is part of the leadership team for the National Osteology Group USA, which formally launched during AAP.

Next year’s event, the Association’s 110th annual meeting, is set for Oct. 31 to Nov. 3, 2024, in San Diego, Calif.

Find a photo gallery of Brion periodontists at AAP on Instagram